ALEX Salmond has kicked off an Alba Party conference this weekend with a rallying call to “choose a new future with independence or repeat the misery of the past with Westminster”.

The former first minister used the opening of the conference to set out his party’s vision for how “referendum roadblocks” can be averted.

Salmond argued that the current economic situation presented by Westminster has created a set of circumstances that can only continue to strengthen the independence argument.

He said: “People across Scotland now know more so than ever that Westminster is broken, it will continue to fail Scotland and put its own self-interest above that of the people. We have a clear choice - a new future with independence or to repeat the same old misery of the past with Westminster”

The party decided to hold the conference following the UK Supreme Court’s decision that Holyrood did not have the power to hold an independence referendum without Westminster’s permission.

Commenting, Salmond said that the Supreme Court “ruled there can’t be an independence referendum but not that there can’t be a referendum”.

He added: “The Scottish Parliament still has the power to hold lawful referenda. Then there is the SNP favoured option to turn an election into a de facto referendum but if so, a decision has to be made whether Westminster or Holyrood is tactically the right poll.

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“Then there is the case for a campaign of parliamentary intervention to force the UK Government to accept Scotland’s right of self-determination or an appeal to the international courts or international opinion.

“A Scottish independence convention is a much supported ALBA policy which could unify the independence campaign and bring together the parliamentary and civic movements for independence.

“These are all possible and potentially exciting moves to take us forward. The discussions we are having about them today with invited guests and members of the public from across the independence movement will help to form that way forward.”